iGEM Researches Cost-Effective Toxin Detection in Peanuts

By Department of MicroBiology | Franklin College of Arts & Sciences

  • $300.00

    Funded. Goal: $40,000.00

  • 4


All contributions will be collected automatically until Dec 31, 2017, 11PM EST.

The International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to education and competition, the advancement of synthetic biology, and the development of an open community and collaboration. This team works to solve major problems in society through synthetic biology, with this years competition focused on the peanut.

Help UGA’s iGEM team raise funds for required materials and competition costs.

The Project

The iGEM competition is an annual, worldwide, synthetic biology event aimed at undergraduate university students, as well as high school and graduate students. iGEM teams work inside and outside of the lab, creating sophisticated projects that strive to create a positive contribution to their communities and the world.

In November 2017, the iGEM Research Team will compete in the international Jamboree, where teams from all around the world come to showcase their projects. UGA iGEM’s team is focused on genetically engineering a solution for a regional problem: they are working to create a biosensor for aflatoxin B1, a fungal toxin, found in peanuts.

Aflatoxin is a major concern for peanut producers, as it has serious health implications as a highly toxic and carcinogenic compound. One of the primary ways in which aflatoxin B1 is detected in peanut crops is through the physical separation of contaminated peanuts. iGEM strives to make a cost-effective and more efficient system for sorting through contaminated peanuts by creating a biosensor that will brightly fluoresce or change color when aflatoxin B1 is detected.

Why This Project Matters

The peanut is Georgia’s official state crop. Each year, approximately two billion pounds of peanuts are grown in Georgia, which represents about half of the peanuts produced annually in the United States. Peanuts are highly susceptible to toxins, which includes aflatoxins. Our goal is to develop a process that makes aflatoxin detection cheaper and easier to reduce the economic impact in one of Georgia’s biggest agricultural industries. Support Georgia farmers and iGEM by donating today.

About iGEM

iGEM is a multifaceted program in which students can develop new skills. The different components of the competition not only make it a strong and thorough program but also allow students to be involved in outreach and education, development of new technologies, an international community, responsible and safe research practices, and project design.

Help iGEM solve an agricultural need in Georgia by making your gift TODAY!


Contact Wendy Aina | Franklin College of Arts & Sciences

aina@uga.edu | 706.542.3581

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